Of all the works of the Arizal's teacher, the holy Rav Moshe Cordovero, Tomer Devorah is the best known, most easily understood and most clearly practical. Its first chapter examines Hashem's Thirteen Attributes of Mercy and reveals the highest levels of interpersonal relations for us to follow.
In The Elucidated Tomer Devorah, Rabbi Shmuel Meir Riachi explains these teachings, which are based upon deep concepts of Kabbalah, in a language and style appropriate for our times, and makes them accessible to everyone. Drawing upon Rav Cordovero's own commentary to the Zohar and his other important works, such as Pardes Rimonim, he provides context and meaning to the author's open enigmatic words. Works of other authors are referenced in the footnotes, adding further illumination to the sefer's message.
Each of the Thirteen Attributes of Divine Mercy is first presented with the analysis of the original text, and then discussed and illustrated with a practical example, involving challenges similar to those we often face in our day-to-day lives. These examples, together with background information and illuminating stories, help us apply these profound traits, which might otherwise seem too lofty and divorced from our present reality.
The Divrei Chaim, Rav Chaim Halberstam of Sanz, stated that all who learn Tomer Devorah will be saved from serious illness. By emulating Hashem's compassion, we transform our judgmental feelings into mercy, and thereby draw an awesome flow of blessing upon us, the Jewish people and the entire world.
"This sefer advances love of Hashem, love of fellow Jews, and perfection of one's middos."
—Rabbi Yitzchak Zilberstein